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Yahoo DFS Baseball: Thursday Picks

Greg Vara

Vara is the lead golf writer at RotoWire. He was named the 2013 FSWA Golf Writer of the Year. In addition to producing the weekly preview and the bulk of the draft kit content, Vara participates in Yahoo!'s "Experts Picks" where he routinely dominates. He also picks college football games against the spread in his "College Capper" article.

PITCHER

Ervin Santana, MN vs. COL ($48): The Twins and Rockies were rained out Wednesday and Santana is scheduled to start the first game of a doubleheader Thursday. Santana was the best option on the night card last night and heís still the best option on this slate. Santana got off to a great start this season and although he was roughed up a couple starts back, he continues to pitch at a high level. In his most recent start, Santana shut down a potent Cleveland lineup, in Cleveland. The Rockies are a force to reckon with at home, but on the road, they are a different team. As a whole, the Rockies are a bottom half team in wOBA against righties and their K rate is eighth worst.

Jordan Montgomery, NYY at KC ($34): Montgomery hasnít shown much of an upside yet this season, but he has been pretty reliable. Heís averaging 16.8 fantasy points per game, but has yet to top 20 points in any one game. The good news is, heís yet to score lower than 15.9 points in any game. The matchup here is a favorable one as well as the Royals have the second worst wOBA against lefties this season. The way the Yankees are hitting, if Montgomery can do what heís done all season, and limit any damage, heís likely going to pick up a win and possibly break through the 20-point barrier.

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CATCHER

Manny Pina, MIL at SD ($9): Pina is one of many Brewers off to a nice start this season. Through 23 games, Pina is batting .312 with 13 runs and 12 RBI. Heís done most of his damage against righties this season, which fits perfectly into his matchup against Jarred Cosart. Cosart is filling in for the injured Trevor Cahill and on the surface, it looks like heís in for a long day, but he doesnít have much of a recent track record to go off on, so I wouldnít recommend a full stack.

FIRST BASE

Ryan Zimmerman, WAS vs. PIT ($28): Zimmerman has cooled considerably since an outrageous start, but he has a chance to get back on track against an extremely vulnerable Tyler Glasnow. Glasnow has battled in most of his starts this season and for the most part heís survived without too much damage, but his most recent start was disastrous. Glasnow surrendered seven runs in 2.1 innings against the Diamondbacks and although Arizona has a stout lineup, itís not going to get any easier against the Nationals. The Nats are a decent stack option, but as always, itís tough to stack them with all the high salaries. Zimmerman is certainly pricey because of his hot start, but heís probably worth it on a day like this.

SECOND BASE

Ian Happ, CHC vs. CIN ($20): Unlike other sites, Yahoo has been quick to adjust pricing on Happ. Happ has actually exceeded expectations as a rookie to this point, which when you factor in that heís batting cleanup in a great lineup, is quite amazing. Happ has done all of his damage from the left side of the plate this season, but thatís only because he hasnít had the opportunity to bat from the right side. Heíll get that chance here as Amir Garrett takes the hill for the Reds. Garrett is no slouch, but heís been beat up a couple times this season and the way the Cubs lineup is going right now, it will probably get ugly for Garrett early on.

THIRD BASE

Miguel Sano, MN vs. COL ($23): Like Santana, Sano remains a good option as he faces German Marquez a day after the rainout. Itís way too early to get a read on Marquez, mostly because heís been two entirely different pitchers in his four starts this season. Heís had two duds and two great games, so which will we see in this game? Thereís no way to know, but one trend that has developed early on is that heís been better against lefties than righties. Enter Miguel Sano, whose hit righties better this season, to the tune of .441 wOBA, which is good for 12th in all of baseball.

SHORTSTOP

Jean Segura, SEA vs. CHW ($25): Segura has had no trouble adjusting to his new digs in Seattle. Segura has 45 hits and 24 runs in just 28 games this season. He also has a great matchup against Dylan Covey. Covey surrendered three runs in just under five innings in his last start and that was his best performance of the season. Covey is trying to eat innings for Chicago, but heís not long for the majors if he keeps pitching like he has this season. A full Seattle stack is recommended against Covey and Segura is at the top of the list.

OUTFIELD

Nelson Cruz, SEA vs. CHW ($26): I mentioned targeting hitters against Covey earlier and if Segura is option 1A, Cruz is 1B. Cruz has 10 home runs and 24 RBI on the season and it looks like heís about to go on another run as well. Cruz homered Monday and Tuesday night and heís got a good chance to pick up another one against Covey. Segura and Cruz are the best active hitters in the Seattle lineup, but they also have the biggest advantage against Covey as righties have hammered him this season. Opposing righties have posted a .542 wOBA against Covey this season.

Nomar Mazara, TEX vs. PHI ($12): Itís not ďTexas hotĒ quite yet, but we are getting close and when the temp goes up in Arlington, the balls fly out of the park. The Rangers meet up with the Phillies in a day game and temps are forecasted to be 90 degrees at game time, which means thereís a good chance we see some long balls in this game. Nick Pivetta takes the mound for the Phillies and heíll bring a 6.14 ERA with him. Mazara has been the most consistent batter in the Ranger lineup this season and heís handled righties fairly well. Mazara has a .361 wOBA against righties this season.

Aaron Altherr, PHI at TEX ($21): The Rangers arenít the only team in this game that should find success at the plate. Martin Perez takes the mound for the Rangers and while his 1-5 record isnít quite indicative of how heís pitched this season, he hasnít exactly shut anyone down. With the warm weather creeping in, Perez will need to up his game to survive. This season, itís been the lefties making life difficult for Perez, but last season it was righties who got to Perez most often. Considering Altherr is the best hitter in the Philly lineup, Iím going to rely on last yearís numbers with the thought that a correction is coming soon. Altherr has cooled a little over the past few games, but he still has 11th best wOBA against righties this season.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire.
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